Last Professor post, David L. asked, “Do our stateside wagers go into the pools in Ireland and affect the odds? When I was in Ireland I saw bookmakers all over, even in small towns. The USA has a population at least 60 times that of Ireland yet they have almost as many tracks as us. Another note regarding betting pools, are wagers made at Las Vegas sport books included in the pari-mutuel pools at the tracks? I’m sure if there was something to be gamed, smarter people than me would have already figured it out.” This week, the Professor answers the questions David L. asked.
All wagers placed through Greyhound Channel are co-mingled in the pools at the host track, even wagers made at the Irish tracks. Greyhound racing is a very popular sport in Ireland, with anywhere from 19-21 tracks active. About half of those are regulated by the Irish Greyhound Board, with the remaining owned and operated by private enterprise, but licensed by the Irish Greyhound Board. These racetracks offer patrons a choice of wagering into Pari-Mutuel pools, or betting through private bookmakers operating at the track.
There are currently 16 greyhound race tracks operating in six states in the U.S.A. Today, when you are wagering on greyhound races at racebooks at casinos, all wagers are co-mingled with the pools at the host track.
For a little background, when casinos started taking wagers on greyhound racing back in the late 1970’s, as with thoroughbred racing, they would “book” the win, place, and show wagers and set limits on the odds (Ex: 20-1 for a win, 10-1 for place, and 5-1 for show), and would also need supervisor approval for a wager if it was over $20.00. The casino would also offer “house Quinellas”, which was calculated by multiplying the win price by 1/2 of the Place price (Ex: $10.00 payoff to win by 2 , if the place price was $4.00 = $20.00). The practice of booking greyhounds was quickly changed as it was too easy for a sharp gambler to manipulate the smaller pools at the greyhound tracks, and the books were losing money. At that point, they stopped offering wagering on greyhounds. When the ability of the racebooks to co-mingle pools with the tracks started, casinos were taking wagers at some greyhound tracks again, with limits still in place for wagers, such as 500-1 on Trifectas, regardless of what the payout is at the track. These limits are still in place today. Also, large wagers at casinos still require supervisor approval, whether on greyhound racing or thoroughbred racing.
Thank you, David L., for the greyt questions and feedback!
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